Aspen, Telluride and Vail Restaurants

Will be driving around Colorado this summer with stops in Aspen, Telluride and Vail.
Looking for restaurant recommendations. Already know about Little Nell in Aspen.

My time in Telluride was brief but drinks and small bites at There was a highlight. Solid cocktail program and fun take on a menu with lots of shareable options. Another stop I would recommend if you have time is Telluride Brewing. Located a little bit outside of town but great variety of beers (get the gose if its on tap).

Much like Telluride my time in Vail was brief but had great meals at Almresi and Mountain Standard. Almresi has a German-Austrian focused menu with the wine list following suit. After a long day on the mountain is was a filling and flavorful meal. At Mountain Standard we shared the beef cheek and pork shank which were both tasty with the pork being my favorite. I’ll see if I can get some more intel from my brother as he spends a lot more time in these places.

In Telluride had a great meal at National.

Terra Bistro in Vail and Grouse Mountain Grill in Beaver Creek have consistently been my favorites for years. Splendid is very good. My experience at Mirabelle last month was disappointing. It used to be great.

In Aspen, Element 47 in the Little Nell. Get the chef’s tasting menu. Outside of town in Ashcroft, the Pine Creek CookHouse for food and atmosphere.
Telluride: There
Vail: Ludwigs

I’ll note that food in all three towns is somewhat underwhelming.

Our favorite restaurant in the state is in Grand Junction: 626 on Rood. We also like the Pullman in Glenwood Springs, The Mercantile in Denver and Bin 707 also in Grand Junction.

Chautauqua Dining Hall and Frasca Food and Wine in Boulder are both worth a detour if you get in that direction. One of my best meals was Soupcon Restaurant, in Crested Butte. If I ever have a bit too much money, Dunton Hot Springs Resort looks amazing.

Thanks so much.

As Michael notes above, no ski towns in CO really blow it out when it comes to dining, they have a captive audience so you’re somewhat at their mercy. With that being said, In Aspen I would recommend Bosq as well as Meat & Cheese. For drinks, Hooch is pretty solid. In Vail I would say the old standbys of Sweet Basil and La Tour are still very consistent and Mountain Standard is fun, especially with a larger group. Vin48 in Avon is also good with a pretty expansive by the glass selection along with a well curated list that doesn’t just skew toward tried and true big names aka wines that would appeal to tourists.

Had a really bad meal at Meat and Cheese in Aspen. Bad waiter and bad food. I also had a top 3 worst ever meal at La Tour in Vail…on my Birthday 50th Birthday of all days. It was made up for by a great meal the next night at Ludwigs.

I think with towns like these you are at the mercy of the seasonal help and how hungover the staff may or may not be.

The more years that I have been traveling to the Rockies, the more my luggage consists of food and wine to cook my own meals.

Enjoyed Russell’s in vail

I know what you mean! I was able to get in and snowboard and get out right before they closed the resorts, super lucky. We did discover a nice restaurant in Edwards called The Rose. Since the panic was setting in it wasn’t too crowded, but it is a pretty small place. Great cocktails, pretty good food, and a decent small wine list.

Have spent a lot of time in Telluride.

High end: Allred’s (and a great view to boot)
New Sheridan Chophouse (steak, with a nice wine list)

Tapas: Village Table in Mountain Village

Less Expensive: Tomboy Tavern (in Mountain Village, right at the base of runs). Food is good, sit outside and enjoy the view
Brown Dog pizza downtown
Smuggler’s Brew Pub
La Cocina de Luz (Mexican/Southwestern)
Siam (Thai)
Oak (bbq and similar food) – at base of the Gondola downtown

Avoid: Altezza at the Peaks. Go have a drink at the bar and enjoy the view, but don’t eat.

Aspen - Element 47, Pine Creek Cookhouse, J-Bar, White House Tavern
Vail - Sweet Basil, Mountain Standard, Craftsman (Edwards)
Frasca in Boulder and Tavernetta in Denver, both owned by Bobby Stuckey are fantastic if you’re going through the Denver metro.

Well done list.

In between in Glenwood Springs I would add The Pullman.